Of murders, aliens among us and getting bullish

It’s time to kick-off another week of fabulous story-telling in Voice, brought to Second Life by the staff and volunteers at the Seanchai Library.

As always, all times SLT / PDT, and unless otherwise stated, events will be held on the Seanchai Library’s home on Imagination Island.

Sunday August 17th, 13:30: Tea-time at Baker Street: The Casebook of Sherlock Holmes

Caledonia Skytower, Corwyn Allen and Kayden Oconnell once again open the pages of The Casebook of Sherlock Holmes, the final set of twelve Sherlock Holmes short stories first published in the Strand Magazine between October 1921 and April 1927.

This week: The Problem of Thor Bridge.

“The faculty of deduction is certainly contagious, Watson,” Holmes informs his good friend one October morning after Watson had arrived for breakfast expecting to find Holmes in a depressed mood, wanting for a good, solid case, but finding him instead practically full of the joys of spring.

The comment comes in response to Watson’s observation that such a good mood could only mean that Holmes did indeed have a case. Even so, it is not until after breakfast that the Great Detective reveals the situation.

“You have heard of Neil Gibson, the Gold King?” he said.

“You mean the American Senator?”

“Well, he was once Senator for some Western state, but is better known as the greatest gold-mining magnate in the world.”

“Yes, I know of him. He has surely lived in England for some time. His name is very familiar.”

“Yes, he bought a considerable estate in Hampshire some five years ago. Possibly you have already heard of the tragic end of his wife?”

“Of course. I remember it now. That is why the name is familiar. But I really know nothing of the details.

The details are that the wife of the aforementioned J. Neil Gibson had been most cruelly murdered by none other than the family’s governess, Grace Dunbar. The evidence in the case couldn’t be more clear, nor Miss Dunbar’s guilt more sure.

So the letter Holmes has received protesting her innocence despite all the evidence indicating otherwise, sets the Great detective a pretty riddle. Particularly as it has been written by none other than J. Neil Gibson himself …

Monday August 18th, 19:00: Far From Home: The People: No Different Flesh

the peopleZenna Chlarson Henderson was one of the first female science-fiction authors, having started reading publications such as astounding Stories from the age of 12, and becoming a popular author in the 1950s and 1960s.

She is perhaps best known for her The People stories, which focus of a race of human-like aliens forced to flee their homeworld due to a natural disaster, and some of whom arrive in the American southwest shortly before the start of the 20th century.

The People have the very best of human qualities: love, gentleness, spirituality; and also special powers of healing, levitation, telekinesis and more, who wish only to preserve their home culture and beliefs amidst a world which, despite their human appearance, does not understand them.

Henderson’s tales about The People ran to some 17 stories which examined the lives of The People, their past on their homeworld, their attempts to live quietly on Earth, their interactions with their human neighbours,  all told in a beautiful, moving style. Why not join Gyro Muggins to learn more as he commences reading The People: No Different Flesh?

Tuesday August 19th, No Reading

The Library will be dark.

Wednesday August 20th, 19:00: More Selections from Chestnut Street

Maeve Binchy, journalist, columnist, playwright and author, began her writing career by accident, thanks to her father sending the letters she wrote to him while on a kibbutz in Israel during the 1960s to a local paper in Ireland, which subsequently published them. This in turn led to her being offered a job with The Irish Times on her return home, thus starting her on the road to becoming one of Ireland’s most successful and internationally recognised writers.

chestnut streetThrough her writings, she would often jot down short stories about an imaginary street in Dublin, where people would constantly come and go and experience the most diverse of times and situations. Once written, these stories would be put away for “the future”. That imaginary street was called Chestnut Street, located not far from the setting of her 2010 bestseller Minding Frankie.

In 2014, these tales of the folk who live along, or visit, Chestnut Street were gathered together in a single volume and published posthumously under the title Chestnut Street.

Join Caledonia Skytower as she delves into the rich diversity of stories to be found inside the covers of this book. Perhaps you’ll meet Bucket Maguire, the window cleaner, who finds himself going to extraordinary lengths to protect his son; or hear all the local gossip from Melly, and see how it helps a local fortune-teller for the good of all; or maybe you’ll find yourself sympathising with poor Nessa, whose summers are blighted every year by the arrival of her aunt from America on a vacation sure to turn Nessa’s life and home upside down. Chestnut Street is inhabited by the most colourful characters, and their stories are lovingly and humourously told; so why not join Caledonia as she pays them a visit?

Thursday August 14th

16:00: First Nation Tales

Caledonia Skytower and Dubhna Rhiadra sit down to bring us more native tales from the first peoples of the North American continent.

Drawing on  number of sources and resources, Cale and Dubna have, over the years, drawn together collections of stories and legends from across a number of First Nation tribes, including the Zuni, Omaha, Paiute, and Hopi as well as legends from Kwaikutlsome in Western Canada. Some of these stories have been published, others of which have come from the long tradition of the spoken word, with archetypal tales handed down through successive generations.

“We have everything from Raven stealing the moon, to how Winter and Summer came to be, and the Creation of Corn,” Cale says of the stories. “The thing I like about them, is the imagery and the “themes” are almost Aesopian. They are all lesson/moral/cautionary tales.”

Join Cale and Dubhna as they delve into this treasure chest of tales and legends.

19:00: the Minotaur

Join Shandon Loring as he plunges into the labyrinthine tale of queeny seductions, kingly puzzle gardens, monsters in the maze and young Athenian heroes all wrapped-up in a tale of strife, romance, torment and triumph!

21;00: Seanchai Late Night

Caledonia and Shandon present One Night with the Fae.


Please check with the Seanchai Library SL’s blog for updates and for additions or changes to the week’s schedule. The featured charity for July-August is WildAid: seeking to end the illegal wildlife trade in our lifetimes by reducing demand through public awareness campaigns and providing comprehensive marine protection.

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